Sunday, March 19, 2017

How to get 100 million stars in KStars

USNO NOMAD star catalog which contains ~100 million stars has been available in KStars for many years, but it appears many KStars users do not know how to get the catalog up and running.

The primary problem is its sheer size (1.4 GB) which tends to fail when being downloaded via KStars Download New Data tool. So here is a quick guide on how to obtain this catalog.

USNO NOMAD requires Tycho-2 catalog to be installed first. It is a relatively smaller download at only 32MB and can be safely installed using the Download New Data tool. Using the keyboard, click Ctrl + N to bring up the dialog, or go to Data → Download.

Navigate to Tycho-2 and click Install.

Wait until Tycho-2 is downloaded and installed. Now download the USNO NOMAD Catalog. Please either use a download manager to download the file, or use wget from the console. To use wget, open a console and type:


Alternatively, you might want to checkout the mirror list first to download the files from a mirror close to you. After downloading the file, extract it and copy USNO-NOMAD-1e8.dat to ~/.local/share/kstars

If you are using console:

tar -xzf USNO-NOMAD-1e8-1.0.tar.gz
cp USNO-NOMAD-1e8.dat ~/.local/share/kstars

Now restart KStars, and go to Settings → Configure KStars. You'll see the Star Catalogs density slider, move it up and click Apply. You can control how many stars KStars draw on the screen, the more stars, the more resources it would take to render them, so adjust the slider carefully.

And if all goes well, you should have millions of stars on in your KStars Sky Map, enjoy!


Unknown said...

Woho !!!! Thanks a lot !

Rani Ahmad (Superlinux) said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Rani Ahmad (Superlinux) said...

مرحبا اخ جاسم المطلق. معك راني احمد. اخي انا اتبعت خطواتك و ماشي الحال و لكن ما زال برنامج
في قسم تحميل الداتا
يظهر لي انه لم يركب بعد و يحاول اعادة التحميل من اول و جديد بدلا من متابعة التحميل .طبعا انا ممكن اتجاهلها. و لكن كنت افكر في عمل ملف تورنت لتسهيل تحميل كـــــــــل الداتا بالكامل. و مرات يتوقف بسبب استعمال "اقرب مرآة تحميل" مع انها ابطأ واحدة صراحة . انا حملت الملف على طريقتك لكن من مرآة سويدية و اعطتني ملف صحيح 100% . البرنامج كان يحمل من مرآة صينية اظن لازم يتغير برنامج
و يحمل الملفات بطريقة التورنت مع تحديد سرعة الرفع حتى لا يغص الجهاز و حتى لا يقلل من تجاوب تصفح الانترنت. سؤالي هو: كيف اتركها بعلامة انها مركبة و جاهزة للاستعمال في نافذة تحميل الداتا؟

Unknown said...

This is very good
I am very happy to be able to find this article
of course I will return to this blog to read other recent articles that you write, greetings :)

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Unknown said...


I followed your steps to add the Tycho 2 catalog (haven't changed the default level of objects to display), but when I enable Show Objects in Image in the KStars FITS Viewer (after plate solving using the Align module) I get only HD, IC, and NGC objects highlighted.
Do I have to increase the level of objects to display?


Unknown said...

For some reason can not download Tycho-2 catalog in KStars. Not sure if is important, but a couple days ago I update to the latest astroberry Version 2.0.4. I checked and there are no new updates to apply.

Unknown said...

ops, I meant to include the error message which is
Download of 'Tycho-2 Star Catalog' failed, error: Socket operation times out

The network appears good as I was able to successful update the comet and asteroid orbital elements.